Over the years I’ve deleted many comments but not for the reasons you think.
I can handle a disagreement or constructive criticism, but the comments I delete are typically just rude and offensive, sometimes even hateful.
They add no value whatsoever and they’d only make my valued readers feel uncomfortable or unsafe.
But some negative comments can actually add value to your blog.
Here are four reasons you should embrace some of those negative comments.
They make you a better writer
When I get negative comments I always look back over the post. Did I say what I really meant to say? Did I make it clear enough for my readers? Did I present both sides of the issue fairly and give the reason for my opinion?
If you’re just going to toss off a quit rant or controversial post then you’re bound to ruffle some feathers. But those negative comments teach you to pay closer attention to what you’re saying and how you’re saying it so you don’t offend your readers. Learn to use language that invites constructive dialog.
They make your readers think
Everyone’s entitled to an opinion and wouldn’t the world be a boring place if we all shared the same one. If nobody ever disagreed we’d all still think the world was flat. Disagreement is vital to progress. Deleting comments simply because a reader disagrees with you tells your readers that you don’t really care about their opinion. Encourage your readers to think for themselves and you’ll build a stronger community.
They make for better conversations
Like I said, wouldn’t the world be a boring place if everyone agreed on everything? Part of the attraction of blogging is all the new people you get to meet and the new ideas you get to share. A one-sided conversation is boring for you, but it’s even worse for your readers. Nobody likes to be preached to.
They increase reader engagement
Those dissenting comments you allow show your readers that you’re open to new ideas and you’re willing to listen to their opinions. By publishing them for all the world to see you’re encouraging your readers to chime in, join the conversation and share their own viewpoint. Suddenly, your blog is the place where people of all viewpoints can gather and safely share ideas.
Encourage dissenting comments because they add value for your readers. But it’s important to remember that negative comments directed towards you are one thing, if they’re directed toward your readers they’re another. Your main objective with comments is to open up a new avenue for conversation and encourage your readers to engage with you and each other. They won’t do that if they feel threatened or offended.